Peterloo Poets

Poetry Publishers 1972 - 2009

We are sorry to announce the death of John Whitworth 11.12.1945 to 20.04.19
Many of you will know John was a well loved and respected member of the Peterloo Poets “family” in its day and was a staunch Peterloo Poets supporter over the years.

The funeral will take place at Barham Crematorium Chapel at 12:40pm on Wednesday 22nd May
Barham Crematorium (CT4 6QU) is 9.6 miles (a 20 minute drive) from Canterbury, using the A2 to Dover.
No flowers, please, but any donations would be appreciated, in John’s name, to: Pilgrim’s Hospice, 56 London Road, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 8JA or online at www.pilgrimshospices.org

 Following his editorship of the poetry magazine Phoenix (1958 - 1975), Harry Chambers founded Peterloo Poets in Manchester in 1972.
Peterloo’s first two full collections published in 1976 were Elma Mitchell’s The Poor Man in the Flesh and Edmond Leo Wright’s The Horwich Hennets. Peterloo Poets went on to publish 240 volumes of poetry.

To view the full Peterloo Poets Catalogue
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Wanting the Day: Selected Poems



Original Cover Price:



Poems by Brian Bartlett


Brian Bartlett’s poetry fuses ideas, events, and emotions with subterranean dreams, compressing them until they turn to diamond. His passion for the physical is rooted in the spiritual, which in turn strengthens the grip of his poems on the natural world. Whether he is writing about a jazz drummer or a foot doctor, a vireo or a seal, a rundown hotel or an Adirondack mountain, humour and music enliven his lines.

One of Canada’s leading poets, Brian Bartlett grew up in New Brunswick, lived for many years in Montreal, and has taught creative writing at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax since 1990. He has published three chapbooks and four full-length collections, most recently The Afterlife of Trees. Wanting the Day brings together the most dramatic poems from these volumes, including winners of the Malahat Review Long Poem Prize and the Petra Kenney Poetry Competition.

“Brian Bartlett’s generous, astute, supple poems show that attentiveness can be a form of love. They stimulate the mind. They also stir the heart”.
                                                                            - Mark Abley, winner of
                                                                            the Eric Gregory Award for Poetry

“Brian Bartlett’s language is rubbed and polished, his diction dense, textured, nuanced, and lush. His poetry is thick and suggestive, its rhythm both subtle and sinewy”.
                                                                            - Ross Leckie, editor
                                                                            The Fiddlehead


The Afterlife of Trees

Neither sheep nor cows crisscross our lives as much.
Trees dangle apples and nuts for the hungry, throw
shade down for lovers, mark sites for the lost,
and first and last are
utterly themselves,
fuller and finer than any number or letter,
any 7 or T. Their fragmentary afterlife goes on
in a guitar’s body and a hockey stick, in the beaked faces
up a totem pole and the stake through a vampires heart,
in a fragrant cheeseboard, a Welsh love-spoon,
a sweat-stained axe handle, a giant green dragonfly
suspended from the ceiling with twine,
in the spellbinding shapechanging
behind a glass woodstove-door . . .

and in a table I sanded and finished this week.
- Finished? – Four grades of sandpaper drew out
alder’s “nature”, inimitable amoeba shapes,
waves, half moons, paw prints dissolving in mud.
What looks more beautiful after death? We sand
and sand, but under the stain, beyond our pottery
and books, our fallen hairs trapped in the varnish,
something remains like memories of a buck
rubbing its horns on bark. Soaked in
deeper than the grain goes: cries, whistles, hoots.


Price 9.00 per copy post free (6.00 post free to Associate Members)
Cover photograph: “Geranium” © Lucy May, 2001. Reproduced with permission.
Publication: 2003 (128 pages laminated paperback)